Moving into the dorms can be a nightmare, no matter what year you are in college. There is always chaos with countless students doing the same thing you are trying to do at the same time. A sea of cars parked outside the dorm coupled with parents and students unloading boxes of dorm “must-haves”— what if you didn’t have to deal with all the madness? What if everything you wanted for your dorm could be delivered right to your room? Design Your Dorm makes this possible.
The brainchild of University Arizona graduates, Taylor Robinson and Bryce Widelitz, Design Your Dorm (DYD) is a virtual 3-D dorm room design website where students can arrange the layout of their room from an inventory of more than 140 college dorm rooms and select the desired furnishings all from the comfort of home. Trips to the local department store on move-in day become a thing of the past. DYD not only provides users with a virtual image of the dorm room, you can also see how your room will look laid out with the desired purchases. Best of all, you don’t have to leave the site to purchase what you need—sheets, pillows, lamps, even futons! Everything's available from the DesignYourDorm Amazon.com store and gets shipped right to your dorm room!
Inspiration for this business grew from the founders' college move-in experiences. They found process to lack organization and be laden with unnecessary complications during a time meant to be exciting and special. By not knowing the layout or what to expect about their dorm room, they were left to make design decisions the day they moved in. According to Robinson, “This meant getting a rental car to make multiple trips to and from the local big box stores at the busiest time of the year and spending our last moments of quality time with our parents setting up our room.” DesignYourDorm has been helping college students avoid this type scenario since June of 2008.
According to the founders, DYD is the only site of its kind in that no other business offers both room design features and product purchasing options. “It is advantageous to use the site instead of waiting arrival on campus so students can know what will fit in their room. They can split room purchases with roommates, and avoid the chaotic last minute shopping that takes place during move-in time,” explains Robinson. The services are free and users are only charged when they purchase items from the DYD store.
In addition to their design-click-order suite of services, students can connect with each other using Facebook, Twitter, and AIM. “Student’s can even chat with all their friends from various social networking sites directly on DYD, which is a great way for students to get to know their roommates and share their DYD experience with their friends,” explains Robinson.
To learn more about to how use DesignYourDorm or to find out how your college might benefit , please join us for #CampusChat on Wednesday, June 30th, 2010, at 9 p.m., Eastern, on Twitter, when a representative from DYD (@DesignYourDorm) will be our expert guest.
Chelsea Merget, a junior at Boston University is pursuing a degree in Communications with a minor in Psychology. She is spending the summer as a public relations intern with Smart College Visit, Inc. For other articles about college life, visit our Heading to College series.